Hockey Olympic Qualifiers: Japan beat Czech Republic 2-0

Prameyanews English

Published By : Prameya News Bureau | January 13, 2024 IST

FIH Hockey Qualifier

Ranchi, Jan 13: Former Asian Games gold medallist Japan scored a goal in each half to open their campaign in the women's FIH HOckey Olympic Qualifiers with a comfortable 2-0 win over Czech Republic at the Marang Gomke Astro Turf Hockey Stadium here on Saturday.

Japan took an early lead in the Pool A match, with Miyu Suzuki converting a penalty corner in the fourth minute and then maintaining their upper hand to add another goal via Shihori Oikawa off a penalty stroke in the 40th minute to emerge victorious.

Japan dominated possession and made some good attacks as they kept the Czech Republic's defence under pressure for most of the match. They earned eight penalty corners, the sixth of which resulted in a penalty stroke off which they scored their second goal.

Japan, who won the Asian Games gold medal in 2018 at Indonesia, are in Pool A along with Germany and Chile besides the Czech Republic. On paper, they are expected to finish second behind Germany in their group and contend with India and New Zealand for two of the three qualifying berths available here. Germany is the hot favourite to take one berth.

Though it was their first match, Japan should have won by a bigger margin but missed a few chances.

The Czech Republic did make a few attacks but could manage only one penalty corner in the entire match which they failed to convert. Both teams had a player sent off for five minutes with a yellow card in the fourth quarter as play became a bit scrappy. (IANS)

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